Summary: A priority that God wants us to put high on the list is our love for people.
iLove – Loving People with the Love of Christ
Last week, we started a brand new series, iTruths-Life Lessons for the iPod Generation. This series is so that we can see how Christians in today’s generation can live successfully, to be what God wants us to be.
Last week, our sermon title was iKnow. This sermon was based on doctrine, on truth. We talked about those core truths that we must adhere to, we must cling to, in order to be the Christian that He wants us to be. We talked about Absolute Truth. And, how this generation has lost sight of what truth really is.
They try to determine truth by looking inside, by searching their own hearts. But we know that the Scripture says that the HEART IS DESPERATELY WICKED. Meaning, that we can never look inside ourselves to find truth. We can only look to the one place that is perfect, that is holy, the one that is unblemished to find truth. And that source is Christ.
For us to be what God wants us to be, to experience what God wants us to experience, to accomplish what God wants us to accomplish and to know what God wants us to know…we must seek absolute truth.
This series is based on one idea. The idea that we as Christians can be world-changers. We can impact the world for Christ, IF WE FOCUS ON THE RIGHT THINGS. If we keep the main thing, the main thing.
We must do all we can in our lives to focus on truth. We must not allow our culture, a culture that seems to be less interested in God and absolutes, to temper our beliefs. We must not allow this culture to taint our lives, to keep us from standing on truth, to keep us from focusing on winning souls for Christ.
Last week, we focused on knowing the truth. Seeking the truth. Loving the truth. And, basing our lives on the truth. Today, we move forward in our iTruths series to a new topic. And this topic is iLOVE!
Love. This is a word that in today’s world has more meanings than probably any other word. You can love your family. You can love your church. You can love sports. You can love food. You can love Diet Pepsi, Lil Cucci’s pizza, even pop tarts.
And the definition of love has been so marginalized that many times we really don’t understand what love really is. We use the word so often and in so many ways, we tend to lose focus of what it really means to LOVE someone. And, because this word has been so overused, when you use it to describe how you feel about lost people, it once again doesn’t seem to hold its true value.
Christ understands the word LOVE. He knows what that word means, He knows the value of this word. He knows how to love. And we as Christians must do what we can to also understand this word…in the way Christ understands this word.
You see, until we understand love from God’s perspective, we will have an extremely difficult time reaching this world for Christ. Because people don’t really care about what you have to say if they don’t know that you care about them…that you love them.
Over the past couple of months, we’ve spent a lot of time talking about our priorities as Christians. We talked about prioritizing our time with God in Bible study and prayer. We talked about prioritizing our time with our family and how important that is.
But another priority that God wants us to put high on the list is our love for people. You see, we want to reach the lost with the Gospel of Christ. But to do so, to earn the right to be heard, we must show them we care. We must show them that we love them. Not in the world’s definition of love, but in God’s definition of love.
1. HOW DO WE LOVE?
a. We love according to God’s definition of love. The Bible teaches us that loving people with God’s love should be first and foremost in our minds and hearts.
Prov. 3:1 (NIV) My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, 2 for they will prolong your life many years and bring you prosperity. 3 Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. 4 Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.
And notice this, when we love others with God’s kind of love, God will protect us, He will preserve us.
5 (NIV) Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.